The Minor Resurrection


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Umar S. al-Ashqar
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The Minor Resurrection (What Happens After Death) : In the Light of the Qur’an & Sunnah

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The Minor Resurrection

  1. 1. ISLAMIC CREED SERIES • 5THE MINORRESURRECTION(What Happens After Death)In the Light of the Quran and Sunnah Umar S. al-Ashqar
  3. 3. Title: THE MINOR RESURRECTION(What Happens After Death)Author: Dr. Umar S. al-AshqarArabic Edition 1 (1990)Translated from Arabic Edition 6 (1995)English Edition 2 (2005)Translator: Nasiruddin al-KhattabEditor: Huda KhattahLayout: IIPH, Riyadh, Saudi ArabiaCover Designer: Haroon Vicente Pascual, Arlington, U.S.A.Filming: Sarno Press Group
  4. 4. ISLAMIC CREED SERIESThe Final DayTHE MINORRESURRECTION(What Happens After Death)In the Light of the Quran and SunnahDr. Umar S. al-AshqarTranslated by:Nasiruddin al-KhattabUNION COLLEGE L.I8R.RYUNCOLN, NEGFV:SKAINTERNATIONAL ISLAMIC PUBLISHING HOUSE
  5. 5. ICONTENTSPUBLISHERS NOTETRANSLATORS FOREWORDINTRODUCTIONSECTION ONEAl-QIYAAMAH A$-SUGHRA(THE MINOR RESERRECTION, i.e., DEATH)CHAPTER ONEDEFINITIONS1 - Definition of Al-Qiyaamah a~-$ughra2 - Al-Barzakh (interval)3 - Al-Mawt (death)(1) Al-Mawt from a linguistic point of view(2) Greater death and lesser death(3) Death is inevitable(4) There is an appointed time for death(5) The time of death is not known to usCHAPTER TWOTHE MOMENT OF DEATH1 - The Coming of the Angels of Death2 - The Stupor of Death151719252526272728293132353542
  6. 6. 6 ContentsThose for whom the agony of death is reduced 453 - At the Time of Death, a Person Wishes to go Back 464 - The Believers Joy at Meeting His Lord 475 - The Presence of the Shay{aan at the Time of Death 486 - Causes of a Bad End 51(1) Corruption in ones belief (aqeedah) 51(2) Persisting in sin 52(3) Turning away from righteousness 53(4) Weakness of faith 547 - The Prophets Were Given the Choice at theTime of Death 57CHAPTER THREETHE SOULS DEPARTURE AND JOURNEY TO HEAVEN 59CHAPTER FOURTHE GRAVE 651 - The Terrors of the Grave 65The darkness of the grave 662 - The Squeezing of the Grave 663 - The Trial (Fitnah) of the Grave 68(1) How will this trial be? 68(2) Will the kaafir be tested in his grave? 70(3) Will anybody other than those who are accountablebe tested? 71
  7. 7. The Minor Resurrection 74 - The Torment and Blessing of the Grave 72(1) The a~aadeeth about the torment and blessing ofthe grave are mutawaatir 72The Messenger of Allah (~) heard the voices of thosewho were being tormented 77People other than the Messenger (~) heard the voicesof those who were being tormented 78(2) Description of the blessings and torment of the grave 79(3) Are the Muslims punished in their graves? 83(4) Reasons for the punishment of the grave 83(5) Things which save one from the trial and tormentof the grave 97Seeking refuge with Allah from the trial of the graveand the torment of the grave 99(6) Those who are protected from the trial and tormentof the grave 1011) The shaheed (martyr) 1012) The one who dies as a muraabit for thesake of Allah 1023) The one who dies on a Friday 1024) The one who dies of a stomach disease 1035 - The Lessons of Death 103(1) Death is the greatest lesson 103(2) Thinking about death 104(3) Examples of lessons 104
  8. 8. 8 Contents(4) More lessons from Arabic poetry 109(5) The effect of remembering death on reformingpeople 112CHAPTER FIVETHE SOUL: AR-ROO/f AND AN-NAFS1 - Definitions1171172 - Does the Soul Have a Shape that may be Understood? 1193 - The Soul is Separate from the Body 1204 - The Seat of the Rool} in the Body5 - The Rool} is Created(1) ljmaa (scholarly consensus):(2) The Quran and Sunnah6 - The Specious Arguments of those who Claim that the124124125126Soul is not Created 1287 - Different Kinds of Nafs 1328 - Do Souls Die? 1349 - The Abode of the Rool} in Al-Barzakh 135(1) The souls of the prophets 135(2) The souls of the martyrs 135(3) The souls of the righteous believers 136(4) The souls of the sinners 137(5) The souls of the kuffaar 13810 - Problems and Answers 138
  9. 9. The Minor Resurrection 911 - Does the Torment in Al-Barzakh Affect the Soul,the Body or Both? 14012 - Does a Person know Anything About What isHappening in this World After He Dies? 141SECTION TWOTHE SIGNS OF THE HOURCHAPTER ONETHE TIME OF THE HOUR 1451 - The Hour Has to Come, there is no Doubt 1452 - The Hour is Close at Hand 1493 -No One Knows the Exact Time of the Hour 1534 - The Reason Why Knowledge of the Timing of theHour is Concealed 1555 - It is not Permissible to Try to Find out the ExactTime of the Hour 1566 - Confusion Surrounding the Idea of Specifying theTime of the Hour 1597 - Definition of Signs (Ashraat and Aayaat) 1628 - The Benefits of Studying the Signs of the Hour andthe Unseen Events to Appear in the Future9 - Categorizing the Signs of the HourCHAPTER TWO163171SIGNS OF THE HOUR WHICH HAVE HAPPENED 1751 - The Sending of the Messenger (~) and his Death 175
  10. 10. 10 Contents2 - The Splitting of the Moon3 - The Fire in I:Jijaaz Which Illuminates the Necks ofthe Camels in Bu~ra1761774 - The Jizyah and Kharaaj will no Longer be Collected 188CHAPTER THREETHE SIGNS WHICH HAVE OCCURRED AND ARE ONGOING,OR WHICH OCCURRED ONCE AND MAY BE REPEATED1 - Conquests and Wars 1912 - Emergence of Imposters (Dajjaals) who WouldClaim to be Prophets 1973 - Al-Fitan (Tribulations, Turmoil) 198(1) Warning of tribulation (fitan) 198(2) Examples of tribulations 203(3) How to save oneself from tribulation 206How should the Muslim deal with wars that happenamong Muslims? 208(4) The focal point and source of tribulation 2104 - The Appointment of Unqualified People to Positionsof Authority 2135 - The Corruption of the Muslims 2166 - The Slave Woman Will Give Birth to Her Mistress andthe Barefoot, Naked Shepherds Will Compete inBuilding Lofty Structures 2187 - The Nations Will Call one Another to Attackthe Muslim Ummah 220The reason for this co-operation (among the kuffaar) 221
  11. 11. The Minor Resurrection 118 - Landslides, Stones from Heaven and Transformationinto Animals, by Means of Which Allah PunishesSome People Among this Ummah 2229 - Abundance of Wealth 22410 - Exclusive Greetings, Widespread Trade andSeverance of Family Ties 22611 - The Standards by Which People are Measured WillBecome Distorted 22712 - The Police Will Whip the People 228CHAPTER FOURTHE SIGNS WHICH HAVE NOT YET HAPPENED 2291 - The Arabian Peninsula Will Become Gardens andRivers Once More 2292 - The New Moon Will Increase in Size 2293 - Animals and Inanimate Objects Will Speak to Men 2304 - The Euphrates Will Uncover a Mountain of Gold 2325 - The Earth Will Bring Forth its Hidden Treasure 2336 - The Muslims Will be Besieged in Madeenah 2347 - Al-Jahjaah Will Seize Power 2348 - The Tribulation of the Saddle-Cloth and theLittle Black Tribulation 2359 - The Appearance of the Mahdi 236(1) Texts which describe the Mahdi 236(2) The degree of soundness of the aiJ,aadeeth whichspeak of the Mahdi 239(3) The beliefs of the Muslim sects concerning Mahdi 242
  12. 12. 12 Contents(4) The time when he will emerge 245(5) Is the Mahdi the khaleefah who will scoop uphandfuls of wealth? 247CHAPTER FIVETHE MAJOR SIGNS 249Introduction: The Major Signs in Order of Occurrence 2491 - The Smoke 2522 - Fitnat ad-Dajjaal (the Tribulation of the Dajjaal) 257(1) His tribulation will be the greatest tribulationin human history 257(2) The reason why he is called Al-Masee~ ad-Dajjaal 259(3) The state of the Muslims at the time when theDajjaal will emerge 260The great battle and the conquest of Constantinople 261(4) Drought and famine before the emergence of theDajjaal 265(5) The attributes and characteristics of the Dajjaal 266General description 266The Dajjaal will be one-eyed 267Written between his eyes is "kaafir" 269He will not have any offspring 270(6) The falsehood of his claim to lordship 271(7) The Dajjaals ability to create fitnah(tribulation, trial) 272
  13. 13. The Minor Resurrection 13(8) Where will he emerge from 277(9) How long he will remain on earth 278(10) The followers of the Dajjaal 278(11) Madeenah and Makkah will be protected fromthe Dajjaal 279(12) How to save oneself from the Dajjaal 281(13) His destruction and the end of his tribulation;the destruction of his Jew followers 284(14) The belief of Ahl as-Sunnah concerning theDajjaal 286(15) Ibn Sayyaad and the Dajjaal 287(16) The Dajjaal according to the report ofTameem ad-Daari 2923 - The Descent of Eesa ibn Maryam 294(1) When he will descend 296(2) How will Eesa rule after he descends? 298(3) Eesa (Jesus) will kill the Dajjaal 300(4) The mission of Eesa after killing the Dajjaal,and the destruction of Yajooj and Majooj 302(5) What we learn from the texts which speak of Eesa 303(6) Good living after the MessiaQ. comes 307(7) Eesas stay on earth 307(8) The virtue of those who will accompany Eesa 3084 - The Emergence of Yajooj and Majooj 308
  14. 14. 14 Contents5 - The End of Islam, the Removal of the Quran andthe Death of Good People 3166 - Mankinds Return to Ignorance and Idol-Worship 3187 -The Destruction of the Kabah by Dhul-Suwayqatayn 3218 - The Rising of the Sun from the West 3229 - The Emergence of the Beast 32310 - The Fire which Will Gather the People 324REFERENCES 329SYMBOLS DIRECTORY 332GLOSSARY 333INDEX OF THE QURAN 347INDEX OF HADITH 350TRANSLITERATION CHART 359
  15. 15. IPUBLISHERS NOTEAll praise and thanks are due to Allah, the Lord ofthe Universe. MayHis blessings and peace be upon the last of the prophets andmessengers Muhammad, his family members, Companions and allthose who follow his footsteps till the end of time.Ma ad or Hereafter is the third of the three-part Islamic Dogma,Tawheed (monotheism), Risaalat (messengership) and Ma ad(Hereafter). The author, after discussing the first two parts of thecreed - the oneness of God, and the Messengers and Messages -delves into the subject of the Final Day/Hereafter. He has divided itinto three parts, "Minor Resurrection" (What happens after Death),"The Day ofResurrection" and "Paradise and Hell". This book dealswith the first phase of the concept of the Hereafter. Dr UmarSulaymaan al-Ashqar, as usual, has discussed this issue exhaustively,based on the texts of the Quran and the Sunnah and the highlyacclaimed and renowned writings of our pious predecessors. Anumber of editions of the Arabic original have been sold out. Thisspeaks of the popularity of this noble work.We are pleased to publish it in a number of languages in order toacquaint our readers with the significance ofthis important aspect ofIslamic belie£ This is the English version rendered by brotherNaasiruddin al-Khattaab who translated his other works also.May Allah bless with acceptance the efforts of the author, thetranslator and all those associated with its publication.Muhammad ibn Abdul-Mul}sin AI-TuwaijriGeneral ManagerInternational Islamic Publishing House, IIPHRiyadh, Saudi Arabia
  16. 16. ITRANSLATORS FOREWORDWhat happens after death? Doctors and scientists are able to describein detail what happens to the body once death has occurred, but whathappens to the essence, the soul, the person who dwelt in that body?This is a question which concerns many, of all backgrounds andwalks of life. Many have tried to answer this question, producingtheories that range from the fanciful to the nihilistic. But man-madenotions cannot answer questions about matters which man has noway of seeing. No-one has ever come back from the other side"with a scientific report on what really happens.In this as in so many other issues, Islam brings us answers. Surely theOne Who gives life and takes it away, is the One Who is the best toinform us of what happens after death. He has informed us aboutthese matters, in His Book and through His last Prophet (~). Deathis acknowledged to be a difficult matter, and so we are instructed toseek refuge with Allah from the trials of death as well as of life. Weare also informed of what will take place after death, including thequestioning of the angels and the torment of the grave, and Islamoffers us the comfort of being able to seek Allahs protection fromthat torment.Death is only one part of the future that concerns us. Human beingshave a fascination with the future, as is apparent from theproliferation ofsoothsayers and fortunetellers. Although the Prophetshave warned mankind repeatedly that consulting such charlatans isl:zaraam (and harmful), they have exerted an influence over peopledown throughout history. In contrast, Islam tells us about the futurejust that which we need to know. For example, we are told that theHour (the Day ofJudgement) will certainly come, but we are not told
  17. 17. 18 Translators Forewordwhen. This knowledge is all we need to know, so that we maycontinually strive to be prepared to meet our Lord. The believers havealways had this sense that the Hour is imminent, from the time oftheProphet (~) until the present day.We do not know when the Hour will come - for even the Prophet(~)was not granted this knowledge. But we have been told of the signsand portents which will herald its coming. Many of the minor signshave already come to pass, or are happening now. Learning aboutthese signs helps us to make sense ofa world that sometimes seems tobe going out of control. When we see that events and trends fit thepattern described in the Quran and a~aadeeth, we understand thatthere is a plan and a purpose, and that Allah is in control of theuniverse.In this book, Dr. Umar al-Ashqar examines all these issues from thepoint of view of the Quran and Sunnah. As always, he quotesextensively from the texts, placing these issues squarely within anIslamic framework and dispelling the myths and misunderstandingsthat have arisen and become prevalent.May Allah reward the author for sharing his deep knowledge with theummah, and may He cause this book to be ofbenefit to all who read it.Na~iruddin al-Khattaab
  18. 18. IINTRODUCTIONPraise be to Allah, the giver and taker of life, the One Who puts thesouls into the bodies and takes them, the One Who created us fromdust and returns us to it, and when He wills, He will bring us backfrom the dust and will resurrect us.And I send blessings and peace upon the Chosen Prophet who spokeat length about death and how difficult it is, about the Day ofResurrection with its horrors and terrors, about the Fire and itstorment, about Paradise and its delights; who woke people from theirnegligence, rid them oftheir confusion and pointed them in the rightdirection.And I send blessings and peace upon his pure family and nobleCompanions, and those who follow them in truth, those who live inthis world whilst their hearts long for the Hereafter, so they strive forthat eternal abode, and this is how they continue until they meet theirLord, so may Allah be pleased with them.We have been brought to this life by the will ofthe Giver and Initiatorof life, and we leave this life when the One Who gave us the souldecides to take it away. People come and others go. They are like thewaves of the sea which come one after another; every time a wavecrashes upon the shore, another wave follows it. They are like arunning river which you see flowing constantly, but the water whichyou see in front ofyou now is not the same water which you saw justa moment ago. They are like a field ofplants which is always green;whenever something in it dies, something else grows. They are like apanel illuminated with hundreds of thousands of candles; you see italways shining, but when we look closely at it we discover the secret
  19. 19. 20 Introductionbehind its continual light, that is, whenever one part ofthe wax burnsout it is replaced by another.But this long and ongoing human existence will come to an end oneday. There will come a day when all ofhuman life will come to a halt,and indeed the entire universe will be destroyed. All the stars will beextinguished and the waves of the sea will come to a standstill. Allvegetation will shrivel and die, and the rivers and springs will dry up.But this destruction will not be the end; it is only one of the stagesthat man will go through. There will come a day when we will all bebrought back to life, to account for our previous deeds.The beliefthat we will be brought back to life for eternity is essentialto correct mans course. For in the depths ofhis heart, man has a lovefor immortality and eternal life. Hence Iblees (Satan) tempted Adamto eat from the tree of which he had been forbidden to eat, byclaiming that eating from it would grant him and his wife eternal life:~Then Shaytaan [Satan] whispered to him, saying: 0Adam! Shall I lead you to the Tree of Eternity and to akingdom that will never waste away?~(Quran 20: 120)Disbeliefin the resurrection brings misery to human souls and causesmankind to deviate from his intended path in this life.Some ofthose who reject the idea ofbeing brought back to life wailand lament, the fact that their life is diminishing with every momentthat passes. This may lead them to isolation and pain until death takesthem. If they are writers or poets, they record their feelings of griefover their lives in articles, books or verses which embody theirmisery, confusion and pain, to offer consolation to those who are in
  20. 20. The Minor Resu"ection 21the same situation. But in fact this only increases their suffering andmakes the sick person even more sick, and it does not bring anyhealing. Some of those who disbelieve in the resurrection hasten tomaK:e the most of physical pleasures, as if they are racing with timeand are afraid that their days will come to an end before they havehad their fill of lifes pleasures.The short period ofour existence in this world is extremely importantwith regard to the next life. The way to eternal happiness which leadsto eternal life in the abode of eternity depends on our achieving realperfection in ourselves and in others. This perfection, which purifiesour souls and corrects our deeds, has a clear foundation which hasbeen explained by the Messengers and in the divinely-revealedBooks.Because the connection between this life and the life ofthe Hereafteris so strong, such that this life is like ploughing and sowing, and thatlife is like reaping and harvesting, man needs to know enough abouthis life in the Hereafter in order to make him prepare for it and live hislife in this world in a manner that will bring him good in the life oftheHereafter.Because the life of the Hereafter is unseen, the veil cannot be liftedfrom it even by people with sharp minds and deep insight, let alonethose who have less insight. But Allah has told them where they willgo after this life, and has informed them about their inevitable course.Mention ofthe life ofthe Hereafter is mixed with mention ofthis life·because the two are interconnected, so that souls may be set straightand reformed in a world where many creatures, human and jinn alike,are striving to mislead people and take them far from the right path.The information which Allah has provided us about that unseen Daywhen we will meet Him cannot be referred to in hints and symbols. Itmust be spoken ofclearly and in detail, in such a way that man will be
  21. 21. 22 Introductionencouraged to have firm faith (yaqeen) with no element of doubt.Whoever looks at what we have compiled in this book about the LastDay will see abundant quotations from the Quran and (ial;eel;Sunnah, which give a detailed picture ofmany ofthe things that willhappen after death and on the Day of Resurrection.The resurrection is something unseen, but it is true. This would not bethe case if the reports about it were not correctly attributed to Allahand/or His Messenger (~). Hence in this book I have ignored thereports whose isnads are not (ial;eel; and cannot be proven to havecome from the Messenger (~). I have also ignored the methodologyofthose who reject the idea ofaccepting (ial;eel; (authentic) al;aadeethif they are al;aad.I have also rejected the method of those who twist the meanings ofthe texts, those who took their minds as judges to judge the texts andwho turned things in reverse order and made the judge subject tojudgement. They went astray and led others astray. In some casesthey went so far as to reject many issues of the Hereafter which areproven in (ial;eel; reports, based on rational analogies which, had theyexamined them closely, would have realized their absurdity. Had theypondered the matters ofthe Hereafter in any depth, they could realizethat the Hereafter is a different world, and that the standards andmeasures of the Hereafter are different from those of this world.We have discussed this important dogmatic principle - one of thebasic Islamic doctrine, at length. We divided it into three topics, eachof which is dealt with in a separate book:1. Al-Qiyaamah a(i-$ughra (the minor resurrection, i.e., death) andthe signs ofAl-Qiyaamah al-Kubra (the greater resurrection, i.e., theDay of Resurrection)2. Al-Qiyaamah al-Kubra, i.e., the Day of Resurrection
  22. 22. The Minor Resurrection 233. Paradise and Hell.This is the first book, and is composed of two sections, as indicatedby the title. The first section discusses Al-Qiyaamah a.y-$ughra, i.e.,death. So this section deals with death and its terrors and stupor; thegrave and its trials, blessings and punishments; then the soul and itsfate in Al-Barzakh.The second section deals with the signs ofthe Hour (the Doomsday).There are many Signs which point to the approach ofthe Hour, someof which are major and others are minor. Some of the minor signshave already come and gone and some have not yet happened. Themajor signs have not happened yet. This section will discuss all ofthat.Finally, I ask Allah to make this book of benefit, and to make itpurely and sincerely for His sake. May Allah send blessings andpeace upon His slave and Messenger Muhammad, and upon hisfamily and Companions.Dr. Umar Sulaymaan al-Ashqar
  24. 24. CHAPTER ONEDEFINITIONSThe stage which every person must go through after the life of thisworld is given a number of names, such as Al-Qiyaamah a~-Sughra(the minor resurrection), al-Barzakh (interval) and al-Mawt (death).We will discuss these three names in some detail below.1 - Definition of Al-Qiyaamah a~-$ughraAl-Qiyaamah a~-Sughra (the minor resurrection) is death. Everyonewho dies goes through this "resurrection" when his appointed timecomes. Both Bukhari and Muslim narrated that Aaishah (~)said:"Bedouin men used to come to the Prophet (~) and ask him aboutthe Hour, and he would look at the youngest of them and say,If this man lives, he will not reach old age until your hourcomes."1Ibn Katheer said: "It meant the end of their generation and theirentrance into the Hereafter. For everyone who dies is considered tohave passed into the Hereafter. Some people say that the one whodies has embarked upon his resurrection. In this sense these words arecorrect."2Ibn Katheer indicated that this view is also held by the philosophers,but they meant something that is invalid and unacceptable. Theatheists mean that death is the end andthatthere is no resurrection afterthat. Ibn Katheer said: "Some of the atheists and the heretics may1Mishkaat al-Ma~aabee~, 3/482An-Nihaayah by Ibn Katheer, l/24
  25. 25. 26 Definitionsbelieve in that, but they mean something else and that is false. As farthe Great Hour is concerned, it is the time when the first and the last (ofthe people on earth) will be gathered together in one arena, and thetime of this is something which is known only to Allah."3Al-Qiyaamah a~-$ughra is also called al-ma aad al-awwal (the firstappointed time) and al-Barzakh (interval).Ibn al-Qayyim said: "Death is a resurrection and a first appointedtime." Allah has made two appointed times and two resurrections forthe son of Adam, in which those who did evil will be requited forwhat they did, and those who did good will be rewarded with good.The first resurrection is when the soul leaves the body, and travels tothe realm of the first requital (reward or punishment)."42 - AI-Barzakh (Interval)In Arabic, barzakh means a barrier between two things. Allah(~)says:~~~~ {~.: (J.~:~ -n- b."(~ ... ~;..». ~ J-.J ···?~...And He has set a barrier [barzakh] between them..)(Quran 25: 53)In shariah, barzakh refers to the period from death until theResurrection. Allah (~) says:J ~ / ,.......,. ,.,.. / "",.,. ,.....// / b."( ~ or-::-!~ j! t/) ritL>J ~J ···"~-..And behind them is barzakh [a barrier] until the Daywhen they will be resurrected) (Quran 23: 100)3Opt. cit.4Ar-RooiJ by Ibn al-Qayyim, p. 103
  26. 26. The Minor Resurrection 27Mujaahid said: this is what is between death and the resurrection.Ash-Shaabi was told that, So and so has died. He said, He is not inthis world or in the Hereafter.5Ibn al-Qayyim said: "The torment and blessing of the grave isanother name for the torment or blessing of barzakh, that is, what isbetween this life and the Hereafter. Allah (~) says:61 ~ ,_,.,._,. ......... j..,.,, ,..,.// / b.l ~ 0~ ~Y. j~ eJ. r-ttlJ_, ~_, ...p~...And behind them is Barzakh [a barrier] until the Daywhen they will be resurrected) (Quran 23: 100)and the people of this barzakh can see into this world and theHereafter."3 - AI-Mawt (Death)(1) AI-Mawt from the semantic point of viewLife and death are opposites, as are light and darkness, cold and heat.Hence, the Arabic language dictionaries define each ofthem in termsofopposites. The definition ofal-lfayaat (life) is: "Al-lfayaat (life) isthe opposite of al-Mawt (death); ~ayy (alive) is opposite to mawt(dead); the plural of ~ayy is a~yaa ."6The definition of death is: "Al-Mawt (death) is the opposite of al-lfayaat (life)."7The root meaning of mawt in Arabic is stillness;everything that has come to a standstill is dead.8So you may hearthem say, "Maatat an-naar mawtan (the fire has died)" when itsashes turn cold and there are no embers left. And they say "Maat al5Tadhkirat al-Qurtubi, 1776Lisaan a/- Arab by Ibn Ma.II+oor, 1/7747Ibid, 3/5478Ibid
  27. 27. 28 Definitions}Jarr wal-bard (the heat and cold have died) when they ease off, and"Maatat ar-ree}J (the wind has died)" when it stops blowing, and"Maatat al-khamr (the wine has died)" when it goes flat. Al-mawt(death) is that in which there is no soul.9If the root meaning of al-Mawt (death) in our language (Arabic) isstillness, then movement is the root meaning of al-lfayaat (life). InLisaan al- Arab it says: "Al-lfayy (living, alive) is everything thatspeaks and utters. With reference to plants, al-}Jayy is everything thatis fresh and growing."10Human life comes about when the soul isbreathed into the body ofthe foetus in his mothers womb, and death"is the severing of the bond between the body and the soul, thechange of situation whereby the soul is separated from the body andmoves from one realm to another."11(2) Greater death and lesser deathSleep is akin to death, hence our scholars called it the lesser death.Sleep is a death, and waking from sleep is a resurrection.~It is He, Who takes your souls by night [when you areasleep], and has knowledge ofall that you have done byday, then He raises [wakes] you up again..)(Quran 6: 60)During sleep, peoples souls are taken, then ifAllah wishes to keep apersons soul whilst he is asleep, He does so, and if He wills that aperson should remain alive, He returns his soul until the appointed9Lisaan al- Arab, 3/54710Lisaan a!- Arab, 1177311Tadhkirat, 4
  28. 28. The Minor Resurrection 29time which He has decreed. Allah (~) says:~ ~~ . ~ ;J ..ij ~·-- ~ ---~:--1 "</~ ~~~~ - ~ ~ I..S);J ;y ~ ~ Jy_~@ ... ~~d~~~~~ ~y_;..s_;ii~~JI/ -~It is Allah Who takes away the souls at the time oftheirdeath, and those that die not during their sleep; He keepsthose [souls] for which He has ordained death and sendsthe rest for a term appointed..) (Quran 39: 42)Here Allah tells us that both souls, the one which He keeps and theone which He sends back, die the death of sleep, but those which diein reality (i.e., their life in this world comes to an end) form a thirdgroup. This group is referred to at the beginning of the aayah: ~It isAllah Who takes away the souls at the time oftheir death...~ (Qur an39:42)Allah mentions two deaths, the death which signals the end of life,and the death of sleep; He mentions that He keeps the souls of thosewho are to die and He sends back the others.It is known that He takes the soul ofeveryone who dies, whether theydie intheir sleep orbefore that, and He sends backthe souls who do notdie. The verse ~It is Allah Who takes away the souls at the time oftheirdeath..) (Qur an 39:42) includes both those who die whilst awakeand those who die in their sleep. When He mentions the two souls whodie, He says that He takes the one and sends back the other. This is theapparent meaning, and there is no need for further discussion." 12(3) Death is inevitableDeath is inevitable for every living creature; there is no escape fromit, as Allah (~) says:12Majmoo Fataawa Shaykh al-Islam, 5/452
  29. 29. 30 Definitions~$ 5;:.;3 ;;~r; ~ ~ ~ -:Jl ~~ ~:}. J: ...)~...Everything will perish save His Face. His is theDecision, and to Him you [all] shall be returned)(Quran 28: 88)J ~ ((".J" .;tij -:. .!~;" ~ ,-::·--- ~ &) (..:: ~-- "~) ~!rt~ ~ J Y ·= ~J ~ J -r.- oA...,.~Whatsoever is on it [the earth] will perish. And the Faceof your Lord full of Majesty and Honour will remainforever) (Quran 55: 26-27)."-: .l~:oil _...... ~_.._.~ /.~---!. c,- ::.:--il ills :-: -.?)i.J....J -- --- i~ r.J.J:" -~.:../>.Y ~ __ ..,... .. ~ !.)>~ ~~ T;]l ~;;; t;_; j~ lli ~~ ~{t.J ~dl if 0~G~I~Everyone shall taste death. And only on the Day ofResurrection shall you be paid your wages in full. Andwhoever is removed away from the Fire and admitted toParadise, he indeed is successful. The life ofthis world isonly the enjoyment of deception [a deceiving thing].~(Quran3: 185)If anyone were to have been saved from death, the best of Allahscreation - Muhammad (~) - would have been saved from it:~Verily, you [0 Muhammad] will die, and verily, they[too] will die) (Quran 39: 30)Allah consoled His Messenger with the news that death was His lawdecreed for His creation:
  30. 30. The Minor Resurrection 31~And We granted not to any hwnan being immortalitybefore you [0 Muhammad]; then ifyou die, would theylive forever?) (Quran 21: 34)Death is inevitable for humans and jinn. In A~-$a}Jee}J it is narratedfrom Ibn Abbaas (~) that the Prophet (~) said:"A oodhu bi izzatika alladhi laa ilaaha ilia anta allaadhi laayamoot, wal-ins wal-jinn yamootoon (I seek refuge in YourGlory, besides Whom there is no other god and Who neverdies, whereas men and jinn will die)."(4) There is an appointed time for deathThere is a destined time for death. It will come in time. No one cango beyond the appointed time which has been set by Allah. Allahhas decreed the life spans of His slaves. It is written with the Pen inAl-Law}J The angels write (and have written) whilst aperson is (and was) still in his mothers womb. No man can delay orbring forward what has been written for him. Every person whodies, or is killed, or drowns, or falls from an airplane or car, or isburned to death, or dies for any other cause, dies (and has died) atthe appointed time decreed by Allah. Many texts indicate this. Allah(~) says:" •..r::...-~,.1.--:_f"" ~, .......... ,J./ 1 ..... // ..........h,"$ ... ~;.. ~ j-Ill ~~h ~~ ..:..._,..:; .;,1 ~ .J~ :.Jp~And no person can ever die except by Allahs Leaveand at an appointed term..) (Quran 3: 145)~$ ... $1::~ rtfJ. ~ tk j_; ~;II~~ iJ~ ~~~Wheresoever you may be, death will overtake you evenif you are in fortresses built up strong and high!..)(Qur an 4: 78)
  31. 31. 32 Definitions~And every nation has its appointed term; when theirterm comes, neither can they delay it nor can theyadvance it an hour [or a moment].~ (Quran 7: 34)J~ =~ ·1, >~~ ,. / {.~ .:JI -:: .....i -::, Ji·:! ... r -~·fj~~-.:..J~<.S .... ....,_,.... "~ ,.~Say [to them]: Verily, the death from which you fleewill surely meet you...~ (Quran 62: 8)~ ~ ~; -~~ f).~_; .S;li ~ G_;ii ~~~We have decreed death to you all, and We are notoutstripped,~ (Quran 56: 60)In Muslim it is narrated that Abdullah ibn Masood said: UmmI:Iabeebah (~),the wife ofthe Prophet, said: "0 Allah, let me enjoymy husband the Messenger ofAllah, my father Abu Sufyaan and mybrother Muaawiyah (i.e., do not let them die before me)."The Prophet (~) said:"You have asked Allah about a time which is appointed anddays which are numbered, and provision which is alreadyshared out. Allah does not hasten to do anything before itsappointed time, and He does not delay anything until after itsappointed time. Ifyou had asked Allah to protect you from thetorment of Hell and the punishment of the grave, that wouldhave been better."13(5) The time of death is not known to usPeople have no knowledge ofthe time when death will come to them.That knowledge belongs to Allah Alone, and it is one of the keys of13Muslim: Kitaab al-Qadr; Al}.mad; 11390, 413, 445
  32. 32. The Minor Resurrection 33the unseen, the knowledge ofwhich Allah has kept to Himself. Allah(~)says:~And with Him are the keys of the Ghayb [all that ishidden], none knows them but He..)~Verily, Allah, with Him [Alone] is the knowledge oftheHour, He sends down the rain, and knows that which isin the wombs. No person knows what he will earntomorrow, and no person knows in what land he will die.Verily, Allah is All-Knower, All-Aware [of things].)(Quran 31: 34)Bukhari narrated in his $a}Jee}J that Ibn Umar reported: TheMessenger of Allah (~) said:"The keys of the unseen are five, and no one knows themexcept Allah.1::~ ~}I ~ ~ ~.J .s~:il ~J;_; ~l1.11 ~ !~ ~ ~~~,.,.-;.- -:; t._,. ,., .:t ..."f r_,........ .., ........../ .... > • " ,. .... »- ,.,.......ul .:,~ .:.._,..:; ~_; ~~ ~ !.S.J...G ~J ~ . /~; j; ~ !.S~..U~® ~_!.f~Verily, Allah, with Him [Alone] is the knowledge oftheHour, He sends down the rain, and knows that which isin the wombs. No person knows what he will earntomorrow, and no person knows in what land he will die.
  33. 33. 34 DefinitionsVerily, Allah is All-Knower, All-Aware [of things].~(Quran 31: 34)."14Al}.mad, Tirmidhi and others narrated that a group of the Sa~aabahreported: The Messenger of Allah (~) said:"When Allah wants to take the soul of a person in a certainland, He causes him to have a need there."14Bukhari: Kitaab al-Istisqaa and Kitaab at-Tafoeer
  34. 34. CHAPTER TWOTHE MOMENT OF DEATH1 - The Coming of the Angels of DeathWhen the appointed time comes and a persons life is drawing to aclose, Allah sends the messengers of death to bring forth the soulwhich is controlling and moving the body.~He is the Irresistible [Supreme], over His slaves, andHe sends guardians [angels guarding and writing all ofones good and ba<;l deeds] over you, until when deathapproaches one of you, Our messengers [angel of deathand his assistants] take his soul, and they never neglecttheir duty) (Quran 6: 61)The angels of death come to the believer in a beautiful form, andthey come to the kaa.fir and the hypocrite in a frightening form.According to the hadith of Al-Baraa ibn Aazib, the Messenger(~) said:"When the believing slave is about to depart this world andmove to the Hereafter, angels come down to him from theheavens, with white faces like the sun. They bring with them ashroud from Paradise and aromatics (for embalming) fromParadise, and they sit in front of him as far as the eye can see.Then the Angel of Death (~) comes and sits at his head, andsays, 0 good soul (according to one report, 0 peacefulsoul), come out to forgiveness from Allah and His pleasure.
  35. 35. 36 The Moment ofDeathThen it comes out like a drop ofwater from the mouth ofajug,and they take it...But when the disbelieving slave (according to one report,immoral slave), is about to depart this world and move to theHereafter, angels come down to him from the heavens, (harshand severe) with black faces, bringing sackcloth1(from Hell).They sit in front of him as far as the eye can see. Then theAngel ofDeath (:,-~) comes and sits at his head, and says, 0evil soul, come out to the anger ofAllah and His wrath. Then itcowers within his body and is dragged out like a (many-hooked) iron skewer passing through wet wool (with whichveins and nerves are cut). "2We cannot see what happens to the dying person at the point ofdeath,although we may see its effects. Allah has told us about the state ofthe dying person:~Then why do you not [intervene] when [the soul of a1This refers to cloth woven of hair which is worn for purposes of mortification ofthe flesh. (Author)2Shaykh Naa~iruddin al-Albaani compiled all the narrations of this hadith andcombined them into one version comprising all the additional phrases which werenarrated in all the various :fa}Jee}J isnads. See A}Jkaam al-Janaa iz, p. 59. Heattributed it to Abu Dawood (2/281), Al-l;Iaakim (1/27-40), AHayaalisi (no. 753),A}Jmad, (4/287, 288, 295, 296 - this version was narrated by him), Al-Aajirri inAsh-Shariah (367-370). Al-l;Iaakim said: (it is) :fa}Jee}J according to the conditionsof the two shaykhs (i.e., Bukhari and Muslim), and Ad-Dhahabi agreed with him,and it is as they said. It is classed as :fa}Jee}J by Ibn al-Qayyim in Alaam al-Muwaqqieen (1/214) and Tahdheeb as-Sunan (4/337), where he narrated that it isclassed as :fa}Jee}J by Abu Naeem and others.
  36. 36. The Minor Resurrection 37dying person] reaches the throat? And you at the momentare looking on, But We [i.e. Our angels who take the soul]are nearer to him than you, but you see not,~(Quran 56: 83-85)What is referred to here is when the soul reaches the throat as aperson is dying, and the people around him can see what is hissuffering of the stupor of death, even though they cannot see theangels of the Most Merciful who are pulling out his soul. ~But We[i.e. Our angels who take the soul] are nearer to him than you, but yousee not.~ (Qur an 56: 85)And Allah (~) says:~He is the Irresistible [Supreme], over His slaves, andHe sends guardians [angels guarding and writing all ofones good and bad deeds] over you, until when deathapproaches one ofyou, Our messengers [angel of deathand his assistants] take his soul, and they never neglecttheir duty) (Quran 6: 61)Elsewhere, Allah (~) says:~Nay, when [the soul] reaches to the collarbone [i.e. upto the throat in its exit], And it will be said: Who cancure him [and save him from death]? And he [the dyingperson] will conclude that it was [the time] of parting[death]; And one leg will be joined with another leg[shrouded].
  37. 37. 38 The Moment ofDeathThe drive will be on that Day to your Lord [Allah]!~(Quran 75: 26-30)What reaches to the collarbone is the soul.The hadith clearly states that the Angel of Death gives the believerglad tidings offorgiveness from Allah and His pleasure, and tells thekaafir or evildoer ofthe anger and wrath ofAllah. This is also clearlystated in many texts of the Quran. Allah (~) says:~t ~..-r~n ~/~~ J:-:-:: i",-::::·r f:{ ~~ c~ i1~ ~Jr ~,b~ ~- l..t- ~ r- P !> ~~ u.?"•-: tff::t, " "/ ~ -~ ~("" .i·, /;1:1 I " ·f~ ~~ / •<= .:,~ I-! I .-:;~ W u..J..l..:..;._y ......:..0 J.: ~ .. ~ ~~ Y~ .J..J !)!1.-S·t" q ~ ~ 1--: ~ ·ti~ ~-- ·:Sil .~: C]l ;"::i · .t{t:.J:fr--""" ~ ~ (""""- )~ ~ . ~ ~ ~- -~J ~ f: ~-: ~· ~J!, ~ z;H-;: ~ 1-: ~ .!(~or.t ~ (f:..J JP ~ :_; ~ ~...u ~ r--~Verily, those who say: Our Lord is Allah [Alone], andthen they stand firm, on them the angels will descend [atthe time of their death] [saying]: Fear not, nor grieve!But receive the glad tidings of Paradise which you havebeen promised! We have been your friends in the life ofthis world and are [so] in the Hereafter. Therein you shallhave [all] that your inner-selves desire, and therein youshall have [all] for which you ask. An entertainmentfrom [Allah], the Oft-Forgiving, Most Merciful)(Quran 41: 30-32)This descent (of the angels) - according to a group of leadingmufassireen, including Mujaahid and As-Suddi - happens at the timeofdeath? Undoubtedly at the point ofdeath, man is in a difficult statein which he fears what lies ahead ofhim and he fears for those whomhe is leaving behind. So the angels come to reassure him concerning3Tafseer Ibn Katheer, 6/174
  38. 38. The Minor Resurrection 39what he is anxious about and to put his mind at rest. They tell him, donot worry about the future in Al-Barzakh and in the Hereafter, and donot grieve for those whom you are leaving behind, your family andchildren, or debts. Rejoice in the greatest glad tidings,~...But receive the glad tidings of Paradise which youhave been promised!~ (Quran 41: 30)~ ~ 5}-1:. ~ ~ ~_; p ~ t; ~ rb.J ..)~...Therein you shall have [all] that your inner-selvesdesire, and therein you shall have [all] for which you ask)(Quran 41: 31)So long as a person is devoted to Allah Alone, Allah will always takecare of him, especially at times of difficulty, one of the hardest ofwhich is this situation (i.e., dying).~ ~ ... ~-srr ~ qjji ~~ ~ ?)q} ~)~We have been your friends in the life ofthis world andare [so] in the Hereafter..) (Quran 41: 31)But for the kaafir and evildoer, the angels come with the oppositenews:j ~;;~·-: lk i1~ ·~k ~ ~li ~ ~ ,u., ~~ ~~ :,.Jr f,)...., ~ r .--.-, ,.!,.... ~.... • ,.........--:..r ..... uti.:,(~_; ~~ ~t .!lt1Jt ~ !,J.;y; ~~ ~~ J;j ~ ~1 i)~ :i"il~®~~Verily, as for those whom the angels take [in death]while they are wronging themselves [as they stayedamong the disbelievers even though emigration wasobligatory for them], they [angels] say (to them]: In
  39. 39. 40 The Moment ofDeathwhat [condition] were you? They reply: We were weakand oppressed on the earth. They [angels] say: Was notthe earth of Allah spacious enough for you to emigratetherein? Such men will find their abode in Hell- what anevil destination!) (Qur an 4: 97)As narrated by Bukhari from Ibn Abbaas, this aayah was revealedconcerning a group ofpeople who had become Muslim, but they didnot migrate (hijrah), then death caught them, or they were killed inthe ranks of the enemy.4So the angels rebuked them as they weredying, and gave them tidings of Hellfire.Allah (~) tells us how the angels brought about the deaths of thekuffaar (disbelievers) in the battle of Badr:~And ifyou could seewhen the angels take away the soulsofthose who disbelieve [at death]; they smite their facesand their backs, [saying]: Taste the punishment of theblazing Fire. This is because ofthatwhich yourhands hadforwarded. And verily, Allah is not unjust to His slaves)(Quran 8:50-51)Ibn Katheer said in his Tafseer ofthese aayaat: "(This means) ifonlyyou could see, 0 Muhammad, when the angels take the souls ofthekuffaar, you would see something tremendously disturbing, whenthey strike their faces and backs and say, Taste the punishment oftheblazing Fire."54Tafseer Ibn Katheer, 2/3695Ibid 3/335j
  40. 40. The Minor Resurrection 41The great mufassir Allaamah ibn Katheer pointed out that this aayahreferred to the battle ofBadr, but it also applies to every kaafir. HenceAllah did not specifically mention the people who died at Badr, ratherHe said: "And ifyou could see when the angels take away the soulsof those who disbelieve..."6What Ibn Katheer said is correct and is indicated by more than oneverse in the Quran, such as:~Who is more unjust than the one who invents a lieagainst Allah or rejects His Aayaat [proofs, evidences,verses, lessons, signs, revelations, etc]? For such theirappointed portion [good things of this worldly life andtheir period of stay therein] will reach them from theBook [ofDecrees] until when Our messengers [the angelof death and his assistants] come to them to take theirsouls, they [the angels] will say: Where are those whomyou used to invoke and worship besides Allah, they willreply, They have vanished and deserted us. And theywill bear witness against themselves, that they weredisbelievers) (Qur an 7: 37)~Those whose lives the angels take while they are doingwrong to themselves [by disbelief and by associating6Opt. cit
  41. 41. 42 The Moment ofDeathpartners in worship with Allah and by committing allkinds of crimes and evil deeds]. Then, they will make[false] submission [saying]: We used not to do anyevil. [The angels will reply]: Yes! Truly, Allah is All-Knower of what you used to do~ (Quran 16: 28)J. ,(· itl ": ~i J.~l :-::;~ 1/ .; r • /·t .,.1~ •1---:-··1 / J·1 1lh~ -..>......., >-&- ~ .0 ~ 0! ~_f~l "!J..U_; ~~ <.J)~~ ..:J) ~ ~_r u.~; .Jd ~ ~;:; ® ;41 ~I; ~ J~-">"..;..,_, .,. ....-..·~ ~ .J. ""1;·I i ·_--: "-:r/ .!..! ··(JI · ,.., · ·L"P. "~_; l~l ~ ~ ;l>_;yw>! .P-":! All!) -r~ ~ -.! ~---~ "~ ~ ~P.~1J ~;.~ ~_;~ ~~~Verily, those who have turned back [have apostatized]as disbelievers after the guidance has been manifested tothem - Shay{aan [Satan] has beautified for them [theirfalse hopes], and [Allah] prolonged their term [age].This is because they said to those who hate what Allahhas sent down: We will obey you in part ofthe matter.But Allah knows their secrets. Then how [will it be]when the angels will take their souls at death, smitingtheir faces and their backs?~ (Quran 47: 25-27)2 - The Stupor of DeathDeath involves a kind of stupor or intoxication which every personwill face when the time of death comes. Allah (~) says:~And the stupor of death will come in truth: This iswhat you have been avoiding!~ (Quran 50: 19)This stupor or intoxication is the distress and hardship of death. Ar-Raaghib said in his book Al-Mufradaat: "This stupor (sukr) is thestate where a person loses his mind; this word is used mostly in
  42. 42. The Minor Resurrection 43connection with intoxicant drinks. It is also used to describe suchthings as anger, love, pain, slumber, and the delirium caused by intensepain. This is what is meant by this aayah" 7The Messenger (~) alsosuffered from this stupor. During his final illness there was a pot orjugofwater in front ofhim, and he kept putting his hand in it then wipinghis face, and saying, "Laa ilaaha illallah, indeed death has stupors."8Aaishah (~)said, describing the final illness of the Messenger ofAllah(~): "I never saw pain more severe than that ofthe Messengerof Allah (~)."9Aaishah (~)visited her father Abu Bakr (~)during his final illness, and when death was approaching, she quotedthe words ofthe poet, "Certainly wealth does not help a man when thedeath rattle sounds in his throat." He uncovered his face and said, "Donot say that. Rather say: ~And the stupor of death will come in truth:"This is what you have been avoiding!"~ (Qur an 50: 19)."10Undoubtedly the kaafir and the evildoer suffer more in death thandoes the believer. We have already quoted part of the hadith of Al-Baraa ibn Aazib, in which it says that the soul of the evildoer andthe kaafir cower in his body when the Angel of Death says to them,"0 evil soul, come out to the anger of Allah and His wrath," andpulls out his soul like a (many-hooked) iron skewer passing throughwet wool with which veins and nerves are cut. The Quran describesthe agony which the kuffaar suffer:7Fat~ al-Baari, 11/3628This hadith is narrated by Bukhari from Aaishah in Kitaab ar-Riqaaq, BaabSakaraat al-Mawt, Fat~ al-Baari, 11/3619Bukhari, Muslim and Tirmidhi. See Jaami al-U~ool, 1116910Ibn Abid-Dunya. Ibn Katheer said in his Tafteer (6/401), after quoting this, thisreport has many isnads.
  43. 43. 44 The Moment ofDeath-~.t- w .J .... ,, ..:::.1~ -<·-:-~ "-1 r.~ ,.-.. ~, .1.11.-,~ cr ,. )w . .;,_;_.)J?. jr. ~~ ~"- ~ ..:t ~-: J.?:-.-= • "!" •-" -~ ~ •.:y "-: -:~ /- "~~~~ ~ <..)J~ ~ ~ I.Y f--J ~ fo. jJll ~ .Jyy.>~And who can be more unjust than he who invents a lieagainst Allah, or says: A revelation has come to mewhereas no Revelation has come to him in anything;and who says, I will reveal the like of what Allah hasrevealed. And ifyou could but see when the :?aalimoon[polytheists and wrongdoers] are in the agonies ofdeath, while the angels are stretching forth their hands[saying]: Deliver your souls! This day you shall berecompensed with the torment of degradation becauseof what you used to utter against Allah other than thetruth. And you used to reject His Aayaat [proofs,evidences, verses, lessons, signs, revelations, etc.] withdisrespect!"~ (Quran 6: 93)What is described in this aayah happens - as Ibn Katheer says - whenthe angels of punishment give the kaafir the tidings of anger,punishment, chains, fetters, Hell, heat and the wrath of the MostMerciful. So his soul cowers in his body and does not want to comeout, then the angels beat them until their souls come out of theirbodies, saying,i~. -"j~~ -~.k v . -.i "(" /·-:-~ "-1 r.h.j;~ t- ~ l..I.T .Jyy.> ~ ~ ~_,... y ~ .;,_;_.)J?. jr. ~~ ...fJ ~ •.:j~l "-: -:~~ ~ ... ~ fo. jJll~...Deliver your souls! This day you shall berecompensed with the torment of degradation becauseof what you used to utter against Allah other than thetruth..) (Quran 6: 93)
  44. 44. The Minor Resurrection 45Ibn Katheer interpreted the "angels stretching forth their hands" asmeaning striking. The meaning of this aayah is like the meaning ofthe aayah,And,~ ~ ... i~U31;: zJl .:: l/) LJ~~If you do stretch your hand against me to kill me..)(Quran 5: 28)J ~ ... :~It r.~i it" ....-.c1 !(.:t, t;t...::-- ...~~ w ~ ~ ~ ~ (1:.-- ("":!> .~ ?~...and [they would] stretch forth their hands and theirtongues against you with evil..) (Quran 60: 2)Some wise people may speak ofthe hardship and stupor that they aresuffering at the time of death. For example, when Amr ibn al-Aa~was on his deathbed, his son said to him, "0 my father! You used tosay, would that I could meet a wise, intelligent man when he is dying,so that he might describe what he sees. You are that man, so describeit to me." He said, "0 my son, by Allah, it is as ifI am lying in a boxand breathing through the eye of a needle, and as if there is a thornypiercing branch being pulled from the bottom of my feet through tothe top of my head."11Those for whom the agony of death is reducedThe Messenger(~) told us that the shaheed (martyr) who falls inbattle will have the agony of death reduced. Abu Hurayrah (.)narrated that the Messenger of Allah (~) said:"The shaheed does not feel the pain of death except as one ofyou feels the pain of a nip or pinch."II Tadhkirat al-Qurtubi, p. 19
  45. 45. 46 The Moment ofDeathThis has been narrated by Tirmidhi, Nasaai and Ad-Daarimi.Tirmidhi said: this is a ghareeb ~asan hadith.123 - At the Time of Death, a Person Wishes to go BackWhen death comes, a person will wish to go back to this world, sothat if he was a kaafir he might become Muslim, and if he was asinner he might repent.~ ~ j.:j dJ ~ f;J.i) .;.~ j~ .::,_;11 ~~ :, ~~~ ~~c ~ ti ~..... ~J ~ ..-J.,...,J. ,... 7,,.,.. ,..../,... "" .,.,._.,.... ..-.}. :-""t./" r-:; ~l./ -X-:~ ~ 0~ ~~ 2J~ t}_) rt;l.>J ~j 4-l;u _yo y ~+>~ .>t> ~~Until, when death comes to one ofthem [those who joinpartners with Allah], he says: My Lord! Send me back,So that I may do good in that which I have left behind!No! It is but a word that he speaks; and behind them isBarzakh [a barrier] until the Day when they will beresurrected) (Quran 23: 99-100)Faith will not be accepted once death comes, and repentance will beof no avail once the death rattle sounds in the throat........ :: . /. --~/ ::-! ~1,-:-:. .-;-tt ~_;1-::; /. J I .&1 t::. i:;·£t WI br..! ~ ..:...:....>);~ _,_, ~~ ..,.- • ..::.:.J.;:!J;. / r..r .>"" ~"L·~~~ .. --·.1-- ~ ~ ~ ~~ .<~1;;t:. ~~ 0~/ .!G:J:t. :r / - ~ "& - / -/ - J /- . ~ ~ j:-.1~Jt J~~"i ~~ --~1~1 ";1~.;.,";•/.J .)_;i-;:;; 6.ili~ • _...!:, _,..- ~w ._/ ,---- !:. ~ / ;.. .. .. .... /..-! ,..... .1- rz.,.... .;.:~~t.:...JtL:I~ ·>i~.G.t..!Lil·1J.~ .,...- /. ~ -"--: ii)1/~ -- . r- ,. - .) r-"~.;..;..>y_r-:~.c .J~Allah accepts only the repentance of those who do evilin ignorance and foolishness and repent soon afterwards;it is they whom Allah will forgive and Allah is Ever All-12Mishkaat al-M~aabee~, 2/358, hadith no. 3836. The editor of Al-Mishkaat said,its isnad is ~asan.
  46. 46. The Minor Resurrection 47Knower, All-Wise. And ofno effect is the repentance ofthose who continue to do evil deeds until death faces oneof them and he says: Now I repent; nor of those whodie while they are disbelievers. For them We haveprepared a painful torment) (Quran 4: 17-18)Al-J:Iaafi? Ibn Katheer quotes several a~aadeeth which indicate thatAllah will accept a persons repentance when death is approaching,so long as the stage of the death rattle has not yet been reached."Allah will accept the slaves repentance so long as the death rattlehas not yet sounded." This is narrated by Tirmidhi and Ibn Maajah.13Everyone who repents before he dies has repented soon afterwards,but the condition ofrepentance is truthful sincerity, and a person maynot be able to repent properly when he is going through this agonyand terror. So man must hasten to repent before the appointed timecomes.4 - The Believers Joy at Meeting His LordWhen the angels of the Most Merciful come to the believing slavewith glad tidings from Allah, his joy and happiness are apparent. Butin the case of the kaafir and evildoer, his distress, grief andexhaustion are obvious. Therefore, when the believing slave is dying,he longs to meet Allah, but the disbeliever or evildoer does not wantto meet Allah. Anas ibn Maalik narrated from Ubaadah ibn a~­~aamit that the Prophet (~) said:"Whoever loves to meet Allah, Allah loves to meet him, andwhoever hates to meet Allah, Allah hates to meet him."Aaishah or one ofhis wives said, "We do not like death." Hesaid, "That is not what I meant. But when the believer is dying,13Tafseer Ibn Katheer 31224
  47. 47. 48 The Moment ofDeathhe is given glad tidings ofthe pleasure and honouring ofAllah,so there is nothing dearer to him than what lies ahead of him.So he loves to meet Allah and Allah loves to meet him. Butwhen the kaafir is dying, he is given the tidings of Allahspunishment and torment, so that nothing is more hated by himthan what lies ahead of him. So he hates to meet Allah andAllah hates to meet him."14Hence the righteous person asks the people who are carrying him tohasten in bringing him to his grave, because he is longing for theblessings, whilst the sinner cries out bewailing the fate to which he isgoing. In Bukhari and Sunan an-Nasaai it is narrated that AbuSaeed al-Khudri (.)related: "The Messenger of Allah(~) said:"When the men carry the deceased on their shoulders, ifhe wasrighteous, he says, Take me quickly! But if he was notrighteous, he says, 0 woe! Where are they taking me?Everything hears his voice except for man, and ifman were tohear it, he would fall unconscious."155 - The Presence of the Shayfaan at the Time of DeathWhen death comes, the Shaytaan is keen not to let the person escapefrom him. Muslim narrated from Jaabir ibn Abdullah that theMessenger of Allah (~) said:"The Shaytaan is present with anyone of you in all his affairs.He is present even when he is eating, so ifany one ofyou dropsa piece offood, let him clean off any dirt that may be on it and14Bukhari, Kitaab ar-Riqaaq, Baab man ababba liqaa Allah ababba Allahliqaa ahu. See Fatb al-Baari, 11/35715Bukhari, Kitaab al-Janaa iz, Qawl al-Mayyit wa huwa alal-Janaazah,Qaddimooni. Fatb al-Baari, 3/184. Also narrated by Nasaai in Kitaab al-Janaaiz,Bah as-Surah jil-Janaazah, 4/41
  48. 48. The Minor Resurrection 49eat it, and not leave it for the Shay{aan. When he has finishedeating, let him lick his fingers, for he does not know in whichpart of the food the barakah (blessing) is."Our scholars mentioned that during those critical moments (ofdeath),the Shaytaan comes to a person in the form ofhis father or mother, orsome other loved one who sincerely care for him, advising him andcalling him to follow Judaism or Christianity or some other principlesthat go against Islam. Then those for whom Allah has decreed doomdeviate (from the truth).16This is what is meant in the aayah:~Our Lord! Let not our hearts deviate [from the truth]after You have guided us, and grant us mercy from You.Truly, You are the Bestower) (Quran 3: 8)Abdullah, the son ofImam A]J.mad ibn I:Ianbal, said: "My father wasdying, and I had in my hand a piece of cloth with which to bind hisbeard. He was drifting in and out of consciousness, and gesturingwith his hand to say No, no. He did this several times, and I said tohim, 0 my father, what was that? He said, The Shay{aan wasstanding near me, biting his fingertips (i.e., trying hard) and saying,Come on, A]J.mad! and I was saying No, no, -until he died."17Qurtubi said: "I heard our shaykh, Imam Abul-Abbaas A]J.mad ibnUmar al-Ququbi, saying, I visited a brother of our shaykh, AbuJafar A]J.mad ibn Muhammad al-Ququbi in Qurtubah (Cordova),when he was dying. It was said to him, "Say Laa ilaaha illallah," andhe was saying, "No, no." When he came to consciousness, we16Tadhkirat al-Qur{ubi, 3317Ibid, 34
  49. 49. 50 The Moment ofDeathmentioned that to him. He said, "Two devils came to me on my rightand my left. One ofthem was saying, Die as a Jew, for it is the bestofreligions, and the other was saying, Die as a Christian, for it is thebest of religions, and I was saying to them. No, no"..."18But this does not necessarily happen in every case, as Ibn Taymiyahsaid. Some people may be tempted to follow other religions beforethey die, and others may not be tempted in this manner. Thishappened to some people. All ofthese are among the trials oflife anddeath which we are commanded to seek refuge from in our prayer.19Shaykh Ibn Taymiyah mentioned that the Shaytaan is at his mostkeen to mislead a person at the time of death, because it is such acritical time. In support of this view he quoted the hadith which isnarrated in A~-Sa~ee~: "It is mans final deed (before death) thatcounts." And he (~) said:"A person may do the deeds of the people of Paradise untilthere is no more than a cubit between him and it, then thedecree overtakes him and he does an action of the people ofHell and thus enters it (Hell). Or a person may do the deeds ofthe people of Hell until there is no more than a cubit betweenhim and it, then the decree overtakes him and he does an actionof the people of Paradise and thus he enters it (Paradise)."Hence it is narrated that "the Shaytaan tries his hardest to temptthe son ofAdam at the time ofdeath, and he says to his helpers,Try to catch this one, for ifhe gets away you will never catchhim."2018Opt. cit19Majmoo al-Fataawa, 4125520Ibid 256
  50. 50. The Minor Resurrection 516 - Causes of a Bad EndSome ofthose who appear to be Muslims and act in accordance withIslam come to a bad end - we seek refuge in Allah from that. This badend may be apparent in the case of some when they are dying.~iddeeq I:Iasan Khan discussed the issue of a bad end, and said:"There are reasons for this of which the believer must remain verycautious."21Then he mentioned these reasons, as follows:(1) Corruption in ones belief (aqeedah)Even ifa person is perfect in his asceticism and conduct, but there issomething incorrect in his belief which he is convinced is right andhe clings to that beliefwithout thinking that he is mistaken, that falsebelief may become apparent when he is dying. This incorrect beliefmay have the effect ofdestroying the rest ofhis beliefs at the time ofdeath. Ifhis soul departs before he realizes and is able to come backto true faith, then this will be a bad end for him, and he will departfrom this world not as a believer. Thus he will be one of those ofwhom Allah(~) says:~ ~ CJ. -:;•- i~ {/..- [j ~ %1 -< • }1:i:" ..)~u~!Jl-"""=f" , ~r .~~-..And there will become apparent to them from Allahwhat they had not been reckoning) (Quran 39: 47)~ )./·; ·" G]l ;,/;j r · ·JoJo·/ -:;--: --: J $ ,~..1~ "o:!-;t tt..t: ..., -~~<.)~ ?J . )~ _., ~ ~ !, ~ ~ U.r> , r""t JA JtJ ~ 1"~ > J. •J. •J.~i" $ U..:.,...J~(t~Say [0 Muhammad]: Shall We tell you the greatestlosers in respect of [their] deeds? Those whose effortshave been wasted in this life while they thought that theywere acquiring good by their deeds.·~(Quran 18: 103-104)21Yaq;ah Ooli al-Jtibaar, 211
  51. 51. 52 The Moment ofDeathEveryone who believes in something incorrectly, whether it is thematter of personal opinion or the matter of following other peoplewho believe it in that way, is in great danger, and his asceticism andrighteousness will be of no benefit to him. The only thing that willbenefit him is correct beliefwhich is in accordance with the Book ofAllah and the Sunnah of His Messenger, because the only religiousbeliefs which count are those which are taken from these two sources.(2) Persisting in sinWhoever persists in sin gets used to it, and everything that a man getsused to in his life will come back to him at the time ofhis death. Ifhewas more inclined towards acts of worship, then what he willremember most at the time ofdeath is those acts ofworship. Ifhe wasmore inclined towards sin, then what he will remember most at thetime ofdeath is his sin. It may preoccupy him so much at the time ofdeath that it may prevent him from repenting, so he is chained by itand it forms a barrier between him and his Lord, and it becomes acause of his being doomed at the end of his life. The Prophet (~)said, "Sin is the harbinger of kufr."The one who does not commit a sin at all, or who commits sin butthen repents, is far removed from this danger. But the one whocommits many sins, until they outnumber his acts of obedience, anddoes not repent from them, but rather persists in sin, is in greatdanger, because his being so used to sin may become the cause oftheimage of those sins appearing in his mind and his being inclinedtowards them. So his soul is taken when he is in that state, so that itbecomes the cause of his bad end.This may be understood by means ofan analogy. Undoubtedly, whatman sees in his dreams are things that he is used to in his life. Hence theone who has spent his life in the pursuit of knowledge sees in hisdreams things that have to do with knowledge and scholars. The one
  52. 52. The Minor Resurrection 53who has spent his life as a tailor sees things that have to do with sewingand tailors. In his dreams, one only sees the things that one is used tobecause one has dealt with them for a long time. Death is more intensethan sleep, but its stupor with its associated unconsciousness is akin tosleep. Ifa person has been used to committing sin for a long time, thismeans that he will remember it at the time ofdeath; itwill come back tohis mind and he will feel an inclination towards it. Ifhis soul is taken atthat point, his end will be a bad one.Ad-Dhahabi said in Al-Kabaa ir: "Mujaahid said: there is no onewho dies, but his companions with whom he used to sit appear tohim. One of those people who used to play chess was dying, and itwas said to him, Say Laa ilaaha illallah. He said, Checkmate!then he died. The words that he used to say in his life whilst playingchess came to his tongue, and instead of uttering the word ofTaw~eed, he said Checkmate!"It is narrated that another man used to sit with wine-drinkers. Whenhe was dying, a man came and urged him to say the shahaadah. Hesaid to him, Drink and pour me some, then he died. There is nopower and no strength except with Allah, the Exalted, theAlmighty.22(3) Turning away from righteousness23Ifa man was righteous in the beginning, then he changed and turnedaway from that, this will be a cause of his having a bad end, likeIblees who at first was the leader and teacher ofthe angels, and strovethe hardest in worship, then when he was commanded to prostrate toAdam he refused and was arrogant, and became one of thedisbelievers. And Balaam ibn Baaoor to whom Allah gave His22Al-Kabaair by Ad-Dhahabi, p. 9123Yaq~ah Ooli al-Itibaar, p. 212
  53. 53. 54 The Moment ofDeathsigns, but he threw them away and preferred this world, and followedhis own whims and desires, so he was one ofthose who went astray.And Bar~ee~a the worshipper, to whom the Shay{aan said,"Disbelieve", and when he disbelieved, the Shay{aan said, "I havenothing to do with you; I fear Allah, the Lord of the Worlds." TheShay{aan led him astray and caused him to disbelieve, but when hedisbelieved, he declared that he had nothing to do with him, lest heshare in the punishment. But that was ofno avail, because Allah(~)says:~So the end ofboth will be that they will be in the Fire,abiding therein. Such is the recompense of the~aalimoon [i.e. polytheists, wrongdoers, disbelieversin Allah and in His Oneness]) (Quran 59: 17)(4) Weakness of faithIf there is some weakness in a persons faith, that weakens his lovefor Allah. The love of this world becomes stronger in his heart andtakes over until there is no room left for love ofAllah, except for thesmallest trace, which has no apparent effect in counteracting the nafsor in restraining it from committing sin or urging it to do acts ofobedience. So the person indulges his desires and commits sin, andthe darkness of sin piles up in his heart and keeps on covering upwhat light offaith is present, although it is weak. When the stupor ofdeath comes, the love ofAllah grows weaker in his heart because hesees that he is departing this world which is so dear to him; his lovefor this world is so great that he does not want to leave it and it hurtshim to depart from it. Allah sees that in him. There is the fear thathatred may displace the love ofAllah in his heart, and that weak lovemay turn to hatred. Ifhis soul departs at this moment ofgreat danger,his end will be a bad one and he will be doomed for eternity.
  54. 54. The Minor Resurrection 55The reason for this bad end is love ofthis world, being content with itand rejoicing in it, whilst also being weak in faith which means thatones love for Allah is weak. This is a chronic problem which mayaffect most people. If a persons heart is overwhelmed with someworldly matter at the point of death, this is what will fill his heartand mind, leaving no room for anything else. If his soul departs atthat point, his heart will be filled with that worldly matter and hisface will be turned towards it, and that will form a barrier betweenhim and his Lord.It is narrated that when Sulaymaan ibn Abd al-Malik enteredMadeenah as a pilgrim, he said, "Is there any man here who met anumber of the $a~aabah?" They said, "Yes, Abu J:Iaazim." So hesent for him, and when he came, he said to him: "0 Abu J:Iaazim,why do we dislike death?" He said, "All your effort has been for thesake ofthis world and you have neglected the Hereafter, and you hateto leave that for which you have striven to go to that for which youhave made no preparations." He said, "You have spoken the truth."Then he said, "I wonder what is stored for us with Allah?" He said,"Check what you have done in accordance with the Book of Allah(i.e., refer your deeds to the Book of Allah and see how far did youfollow the Book) ." He said, "Where will I find it?" He said, "In theaayah,~Verily, the Abraar [the pious believers of IslamicMonotheism] will be in Delight [Paradise]; And verily,the Fujjaar [the wicked, disbelievers, polytheists,sinners and evildoers] will be in the blazing Fire [Hell]~(Quran 82: 13-14)."He said, "And where is the mercy ofAllah?" He said, "The mercy ofAllah is close to those who do good." He said, "I wonder, how will Iappear before Allah?" He said, "The one who does good is like the
  55. 55. 56 The Moment ofDeathone who has been absent when he comes back to his family, but theevildoer is like the runaway slave when he comes back to hismaster." Then Sulaymaan wept loudly, and said, "Advise me!" Hesaid, "Beware lest Allah sees you where He has forbidden you to beand does not find you where He has commanded you to be."Siddeeq I:Iasan Khan quotes from Al-Ghazaali in Al-1/:lyaa that a badend may be on one of two levels, one of which is more serious thanthe other. The more serious level, which dooms a person to Hell, iswhen the heart is overwhelmed with either doubt or denial at thetime of the stupor and terror of death, and the soul is taken when itis in that state. This forms an eternal barrier between the person andAllah, and condemns him to eternal banishment and everlastingtorment.The second level is when a persons heart, at the moment of death,is overwhelmed with love for some worldly matter or desire, whichappears in his heart and overwhelms it, leaving no room foranything else at that moment. If the soul is taken at the momentwhen it is overwhelmed with love for this world, the matter isserious, because a person dies as he lived. At that point the feelingof sorrow and regret will be great indeed, unless faith and love forAllah were firmly implanted in his heart for a long time and weresupported by righteous deeds which will cancel out this danger thatwas posed to the heart at the time of death. If his faith wasequivalent to an atoms weight (or a small ant), he will be broughtforth from Hell sooner. If it was smaller than that, he will remain inHell for a longer time, but so long as there was even the tiniestspeck of faith, he will eventually be brought forth from the Fire,even if it is after thousands of years. Everyone who believes inAllah and in His Attributes and deeds, but he has the slightestmisconception, whether that is because of imitating others orbecause of his own personal opinion, is exposed to this danger.
  56. 56. The Minor Resurrection 57Asceticism and piety are not enough to ward off this danger;nothing can save a person from this except belief in the truthaccording to the Quran and Sunnah.247- The Prophets Were Given the Choice at the Time ofDeathWhen the time of death came for the Prophets, Allah showed themthe great reward that was stored for them with Him, then He gavethem the choice of staying in this world or moving to that greatposition. UndoubtedlyeveryMessengerpreferred the eternal blessing.This happened to ourMessenger(~) too -he was given the choice andhe made his choice. Buk:hari it is narrated that Aaishah (~) said:"The Messenger of Allah (~) used to say, and it is true:No Prophet ever died until he had been shown his place inParadise, then given the choice. When it was revealed to him,and his head was on my thigh, he fell unconscious for a while,then he woke up. He stared at the ceiling, then he said, 0Allah, with the highest companions. I said, He is notchoosing us, and I knew that this was what he had told usabout." She said: "Those were the last words that the Prophet(~) spoke, when he said, 0 Allah, with the highestcompanions."25According to another report26: "During his final illness, I heard theProphet (~) saying in a hoarse voice:24Yaq:;ah Ooli al-Itibaar, p. 21625Bukhari: Kitaab ar-Riqaaq, Baab Man al]abba liqaa Allah, Fatl] al-Baari, Ill357. also narrated by Muslim in his $al]eel], and by Maalik in Al-Muwa{fa, andby Tirrnidhi in as-Sunan. Ibn al-Atheer mentioned other versions of the hadithnarrated from Aaishah in Jaami al-U:tool, 1116726This is in all the reports
  57. 57. 58 The Moment ofDeath~-..then they will be in the company of those on whomAllah has bestowed His Grace, of the Prophets, thefiiddiqoon [those followers of the Prophets who werefirst and foremost to believe in them, like Abu Bakr A~­~iddeeq], the martyrs, and the righteous. And howexcellent these companions are!·~ (Quran 4: 69)."She said: "And I thought that he had made his choice that day."
  58. 58. CHAPTER THREETHE SOULS DEPARTURE ANDJOURNEY TO HEAVENIt is narrated by Muslim that Abu Hurayrah (.)said: "When thesoul of the believer departs it is met by two angels who take it up."I:Iammaad1said: "And he mentioned its good fragrance of musk."He said: "And the inhabitants of heaven say, A good soul that hascome from the earth; may Allah bless you and the body in which youused to dwell. Then he is taken up to his Lord, then He says, Take itto its destined end."He further said: "But when the soul of the kaajir departs..."I:Iammaad said: "And he mentioned its stench, and curses..." "... theinhabitants of heaven say, An evil soul that has come from theearth.... And it is said, Take it to its destined end."2According to the hadith ofAl-Baraa, the Messenger(~) mentionedthe way in which the soul of the righteous person will be honouredafter it is brought forth from his body: the angels send blessingsupon that good soul, the gates of heaven are opened for it, it isplaced in a shroud from Paradise with embalming perfumes fromParadise and it emits a beautiful fragrance which is superior to thescent of musk. Then the angels take it on a sublime journey ofhonour, and the gates of heaven are opened for it. As for the evilsoul, the angels of heaven curse it when it is brought forth. Thegates of heaven are locked, and every group of angels of the MostMerciful who are at the gates plead for it not to be allowed to1One of the narrators of this hadith from Abu Hurayrah, as recorded by Muslim.2Muslim, Kitaab al-Jannah, Baab Arad Maq ad al-Mayit, 4/2202, hadith no.2872
  59. 59. 60 The Souls Departure and Journey to Heavenascend through the place where they are. That evil soul is placed ina shroud from Hell with embalming perfumes from Hell. Thereemanate from it foul stenches which offend the angels of the MostMerciful. It is taken up to heaven but the gates of heaven are notopened for it. Then his soul is thrown down from that height.According to the hadith of Al-Baraa ibn Aazib, in which theMessenger (~) described a persons journey after death to Al-Barzakh, he said: "...until when his soul comes forth, every angelbetween heaven and earth, and every angel in heaven, sendsblessings on it. The gates of heaven are opened for him and there isno one among the gatekeepers who does not pray to Allah to let himascend through where they are. When he (i.e., the Angel of Death)takes it (that soul), they (the angels) do not leave it in his hand evenfor a twinkle of an eye, before they take it and put it in that shroudand that embalming perfume." This is what Allah (~) says:iJ ~ -:, t~<~ ..:i .).~ ~~).~ J.·fi~~ h~ ~ ...,_,...~ J ~.J ~.J A:.J_J) ••• f~...Our messengers [angel of death and his assistants]take his soul, and they never neglect their duty)(Quran 6: 61)There comes forth from it (a fragrance) like the finest musk to befound on the face of the earth. They take it up, and they do not passany group ofangels but they say, Who is this good soul? They say,It is So and so the son of So and so- calling him by the best namesby which he was known in this world. Then when they reach the firstheaven, they ask for it to be opened for them, and it is opened forthem. (In each of the heavens), the angels who are closest to Allahwalk with him (to bid him farewell) as he moves to the next heaven,until he reaches the seventh heaven. Then Allah(~) says, Place thebook of My slave in Illiyyeen (the Register of righteous deeds).
  60. 60. The Minor Resurrection 61~ ~ ~>[?i ~>,: ~ ~~.-: .::;£ ~ Zl~i~ ~.!1::~ t:~~ ~.:I"" ~ w j.JI/ . / w ~ .) ~~And what will make you know what Illiyyoon is? ARegister inscribed,. To which bear witness those nearest[to Allah, i.e. the angels].) (Quran 83: 19-21)So they place his book in Illiyyeen, then it is said, Take him back tothe earth, for from it I created them, to it I will return them, and fromit I shall bring them forth again."And the Messenger of Allah (~) spoke of the evil soul which isdragged forth from the kaafir or evildoer. He said that after it isdragged forth, "(Then every angel between heaven and earth, andevery angel in heaven, curses it, and the gates of heaven are shut.There is no one among the gatekeepers who does not pray to Allahnot to let him ascend through where they are). When he (i.e., theAngel ofDeath) takes it (that soul), they (the angels) do not leave it inhis hand even for the twinkle of an eye, before they take it and put itin that sackcloth. There emanates from it (a stench) like the fouleststench ofdead flesh to be found on the face ofthe earth. They take itup, and they do not pass any group of angels but they say, Who isthis evil soul? They say, It is So and so the son of So and so -calling him by the worst names by which he was known in thisworld. Then when they reach the first heaven, they ask for it to beopened for them, and it is not opened for them." Then theMessenger of Allah (~) recited the aayah:~...for them the gates of heaven will not be opened, andthey will not enter Paradise until the camel goes throughthe eye of the needle..) (Quran 7: 40)
  61. 61. 62 The Souls Departure and Journey to Heaven"Then Allah (~) says:Record his book in Sijjeen (the Register ofevil deeds), in the lowestearth. Then He says, Return My slave to the earth, for I havepromised them that from it I created them, to it I will return them, andfrom it I shall bring them forth again. So they throw it down fromheaven, (until it returns to his body)." Then he recited the aayah:~...and whoever assigns partners to Allah, it is as if hehad fallen from the sky, and the birds had snatched him,or the wind had thrown him to a far off place)(Quran 22: 31)Then his soul is returned to his body.3Ibn Maajah narrated from Abu Hurayrah (may Allah be pleased withhim) that the Messenger of Allah (blessings and peace be upon him)said:"The deceased is attended by the angels. Ifhe was a righteousman, they say, Come forth, 0 good soul which was in a goodbody. Come forth praiseworthy, and receive the glad tidings ofrest and provision, and a Lord Who is not angry. Theycontinue to say this until it comes out, then they take it up toheaven. They ask for it to be opened, and it is asked, Who isthis? They say, So and so. Then it is said, Welcome to thegood soul which was in a good body. Enter praiseworthy andreceive the glad tidings of rest and provision, and a Lord Whois not angry. They continue to say this until they take him up to3A ~a~ee~ hadith.l!JilJ
  62. 62. The Minor Resurrection 63the heaven in which is Allah4, may He be blessed and exalted.But if it was an evil man, they say, Come forth, 0 evil soulwhich was in an evil body. Come forth blameworthy andreceive the tidings of a boiling fluid and dirty wounddischarges, and other torments ofsimilar kind, all together! (cf.38:57-58) They continue to say this until it comes forth, thenthey take it up to heaven. They ask for the heaven to be openedfor it, and it is asked, Who is this? They say, So and so. It issaid, There is no welcome for the evil soul which was in anevil body. Go back blameworthy. So the gates are not openedfor it, and it is sent down from heaven and goes back to thegrave..."54This does not mean that the heaven physically contains Allah - exalted be Hefar above that. Rather Allah is above His heavens, distinct from His creation.Allah says concerning His Kursiy (Footstool): ~...His Kursiy extends over theheavens and the earth..) (Qur an 2:255). The Messenger told us that the heavens,in comparison to the Kursiy, are like an iron ring thrown out into open country,and that the Kursiy, in comparison to the Throne, is like an iron ring thrown outinto open country. This aayah is like the verses, ~...and I will surely, crucify youon [lit. in) the trunks of date palms..) (Qur an 20:71) and Cso travel freely forfour months [as you will) throughout [lit. in) the land..) (Qur an 9:2), wheremeaning is not that they are inside the trees or inside the earth. So the meaning isthat Allah is above and over the heavens. This hadith is like the aayah, ~Do youfeel secure that He, Who is over the heaven (Allah), will not cause the earth tosink with you?...• (Quran 67:16), i.e., He is above. And it is like the hadith inwhich the Messenger asked the slave girl, "Where is Allah~" She said, "Inheaven." He (bpuh) said, "Set her free, for she is a believer." This hadith isnarrated by Muslim in his Sa}Jee}J.5Ibn Maajah. Shaykh N~ir classed it as ~a}Jee}J in Sa}Jee}J al-Jaami ~-Sagheer,2/169
  63. 63. 64 The Souls Departure and Journey to Heaven
  64. 64. CHAPTER FOURTHE GRAVE1 - The Terrors of the GraveHaani, the freed slave of Uthmaan ibn Affaan, narrated thatwhenever Uthmaan (may Allah be pleased with him) stood over agrave he would weep until his beard would be wet. It was said to him,"You remember Paradise and Hell and you do not weep, but whenyou remember the grave you weep?" He said, "I heard the Messengerof Allah (~) sayThe grave is the first stage of the Hereafter. Whoever passesthrough it safely, whatever comes after that will be easier forhim, but if he does not pass through it safely, whatever comesafter that will be harder for him."He said, "And I heard the Messenger of Allah (~) say,I have never seen any (disturbing) scene, more terrifying thanthe grave."This is narrated by Tirmidhi.1Because what comes after the gravewill be easier for the one who passes through it safely, when thebeliever is shown in his grave the delights that Allah has prepared forhim, he will say, "0 Lord, hasten the coming of the Hour, so that Imay go back to my family and my wealth."2But when the1Tirmidhi and Ibn Maajah. Tirmidhi said, this is a ghareeb hadith. See Mishkaatal-Ma~aabee/J, 1/48; Jaami al-U~ool, 111164. Shaykh Naa~ir said in hiscommentary on Al-Mishkaat, its isnad is /Jasan. See Sa/Jee/J al-Jaami a~-Sagheer,2/852From the hadith of Al-Baraa.
  65. 65. 66 The Gravedisbeliever or evildoer sees the intense torment that Allah hasprepared for him, he will say, despite the torment that he is suffering,"0 Lord, do not let the Hour come"3- because what is yet to come iseven worse and more terrifying.The darkness of the graveAt the time of the Messenger (~), a woman died who used to cleanthe mosque. The Messenger (~) noticed that she was not there.They told him that she died during the night and buried her. Theydid not like to wake him up. He asked his Companions to show himher grave, then he went to her grave and prayed for her. Then hesaid,"These graves are full ofdarkness, but Allah illuminates themfor their occupants by virtue of my praying for them." This isnarrated by Bukhari, Muslim, Abu Dawood, Ibn Maajah, Al-Bayhaqi and Al;tmad.42 - The Squeezing of the GraveWhen the deceased is placed in his grave, he is squeezed in a mannerfrom which no one, great or small, righteous or immoral, can escape.It is narrated in the abaadeeth that Sad ibn Muaadh was squeezed,and he was the one at whose death the Throne shook and for whomthe gates ofheaven were opened, and whose funeral was attended byseventy thousand angels. In Sunan an-Nasaa i it is narrated that IbnUmar (.) related: "The Messenger of Allah (blessings and peacebe upon him) said:3From the hadith of Al-Baraa.4Al}kaam al-Janaa iz, p. 87
  66. 66. The Minor Resurrection 67This one at whose death the Throne shook, for whom the gatesof heaven were opened, and whose funeral was attended byseventy thousand angels, has been squeezed once, thenrelieved him."5In Musnad at-Imam A~mad it is also reported from Ibn Umar that theMessenger of Allah (~) said:"There is squeezing in the grave; if anyone were to have beensaved from it, it would have been Sad ibn Muaadh."6In Musnad at-Tabaraani al-Kabeer and Musnad at-Tabaraani al-Awsat it is narrated from Ibn Abbaas (~) that the Messenger ofAllah (~) said:"If anyone were to have been saved from the squeezing ofthegrave, it would have been Sad ibn Muaadh. He was squeezedonce, then released."7All these texts indicate that the squeezing of the grave is inevitablefor every person, even children are not spared ofthis. In Musnad at-Tabaraani al-Kabeer it is narrated from Abu Ayyoob al-An~aari witha ~a~ee~ isnad, and in Musnad at-Tabaraani al-Awsa{ and Al-Kaamilfrom Ibn Adiy from Anas, that the Messenger (blessings and peacebe upon him) said:"Ifanyone were to have been saved from the squeezing of thegrave, it would have been this child."85Nasaai: Kitaab al-Janaa iz, Baab l)ummat al-Qabr wa l)agh(atuhu, 4/100.Shaykh Naa~iruddin al-Albaani said in Mishkaat al-Ma~aabee~ (1149): its isnad is~a~ee~ according to the conditions of Muslim.6Shaykh Naa~iruddin al-Albaani said in Sa~ee~ al-Jaami (2/236), ,its isnad is:fG~ee~7Sa~ee~ al-Jaami (5/71), its isnad is :fa~ee~8Ibid
  67. 67. 68 The Grave3 - The Trial (Fitnah) of the Grave(1) How will this trial be?When a person is placed in his grave, two angels come to him in afrightening form. In Sunan at-Tinnidhi it says: "When the deceased- or when one of you - is buried, two black and blue angels come tohim, one of whom is called Al-Munkar and the other An-Nakeer.They say, What did you say about this man? and he tells themwhat he used to say, He is the slave of Allah and His Messenger. Ibear witness that there is no god except Allah and that Muhammadis His slave and Messenger... But if he was a hypocrite, he says, Iheard the people saying something and I said likewise; I dontknow...."9According to the hadith narrated by Al-Baraa ibn Aazib, theMessenger (~) said:"Two (very harsh) angels come to him (and treat him roughly)and make him sit up. They say to him, Who is your Lord?What is your religion? Who is your Prophet? This is the lasttrial to which the believer is subjected. This is what Allahrefers to in the aayah:~ ~ ... C~ 6il ·.:..Gil J·~rt i~1: ~ Ji ~~ .~.-:.:~~ - )_r..- ~ ,_ ).,.... ,_ ~ ~- ;. -~Allah will keep firm those who believe, with the wordthat stands firm in this world..) (Quran 14: 27)9Tirmidhi, Kitaab al-Janaa iz, Baab Maa jaa a fi adhaab al-qabr, 3/383.Tirmidhi said, (it is) a ghareeb IJasan hadith. The editor, Shaykh Al;unad Shaakir,said: It is not narrated by any of the authors of the six books, apart fromTirmidhi. Shaykh Naa~iruddin al-Albaani indicated that it is IJasan in Sa!Jee!J al-Jaami a~-$agheer, 11259, and he narrated it in Silsilat al-AIJaadeeth a~-Sa!Jee!Jah,hadith no. 1391
  68. 68. The Minor Resurrection 69So he says, My Lord is Allah, my religion is Islam and my Prophet isMuhammad(~). Then a voice cries out from heaven, My slave hasspoken the truth."And he said concerning the kaafir or evildoer: "Two (very harsh)angels come to him (and treathimroughly) and make him sit. They sayto him, Who is your Lord? He says, Oh, oh, I dontknow. They sayto him, What is your religion? He says, Oh, oh, I dontknow. Theysay, What do you say about this man who was sent among you? Hecannot remember his name, so they tell him, Muhammad. He says,Oh, oh, I dont know. (I heardpeople saying such and such. They sayto him, May you never know and may you never say what the peoplesaid!) Then a voice calls out, My slave is lying..1°It is narrated from Anas (~)that the Messenger ofAllah(~) said:"When a person is placed in his grave, and his companionsleave him, he can hear their footsteps. When they have left, twoangels come to him, get him sit and say, What did you sayabout this man, Muhammad? The believer says, I bearwitness that he is the slave ofAllah and His Messenger... Butthe kaafir or hypocrite (in one report: the kaafir and thehypocrite) says, I dont know. I used to say what the peoplewere saying about him. It is said to him, May you never knowand may you never say what the people said!" This is narratedby Bukhari, Muslim, Abu Dawood and Nasaai.11At first, the Messenger (~) did not know that this ummah would betried in the grave. Then Allah revealed this knowledge to him.Urwah ibn az-Zubayr narrated that his maternal aunt Aaishah said:"The Messenger (~) came to me, and there was a Jewish woman10A fja}Jeel} hadith.11Jaami al-Uf!ool, 11/173
  69. 69. 70 The Gravewith me. She was saying, Do you think that you will be tested in thegrave? The Messenger of Allah(~) was alarmed, and said, TheJews will be tested." Aaishah said, "Several nights passed, then theMessenger of Allah (~) saidDo you know that it has been revealed to me that you will betested in the grave?Aaishah said: "I heard the Messenger of Allah (~) after thatseeking refuge with Allah from the torment of the grave."12(2) Will the kaafir be tested in his grave?The a~aadeeth that we have quoted indicate that the kuffaar will betested in their graves. But Al-I:Iakeem at-Tirmidhi, Ibn Abd al-Barrand Suyooti13held a different view. Al-I:Iakeem at-Tirmidhi quotedas evidence, that they will not be questioned, the fact that whenprevious nations refused to respond to their Messengers, thepunishment was hastened upon them, unlike this ummah from whomthe punishment is withheld. The Messenger (~) has been sent withthe sword, so whoever enters Islam for fear of being killed, thenbecomes a hypocrite, will be punished in his grave. But what he saysis subject to further discussion, because Allah did not destroy thedisbelievers of other nations after He had sent down the Tawraat. 14Ibn Abd al-Barr quoted as evidence the ~a~ee~ hadith in which theProphet (~) said: "This ummah will be tested in their graves"; someversions say, "will be questioned."15The ~a~ee~ a~aadeeth refute12Muslim, Kitaab al-Masaajid wa Mawaadi a~-Salaah, Baab lstil]baab al-Taawwudh min Adhaab al-Qabr, hadith nos. 584, 1141013Lawaami al-Anwaar al-Bahiyyah, 2/1014See Lawaami al-Anwaar al-Bahiyyah by As-Safaareeni, 2/1015Lawaami al-Anwaar al-Bahiyyah by As-Safaareeni, 2/10; Tadhkirat al-Qur(ubi,147II____j
  70. 70. The Minor Resurrection 71this understanding, and indicate that this is not limited to thebelievers or to this ummah.Abd al-J:Iaqq al-Ishbeeli, Ibn al-Qayyim, Ququbi, As-Safaareeni andothers were ofthe view that the questioning (in the grave) includes allpeople.16(3) Will anybody other than those who are accountable betested?The trial ofthe grave is something which will happen to all ofthosewho are accountable, apart from the Prophets17- there is somescholarly dispute as to whether they are subject to it - and theshuhadaa (martyrs), muraabifoon (those who guard the borders ofIslam) and others who, it is stated in the texts, will be spared this trial,as we shall see in more detail below.There is also some dispute concerning young children and the insane.Some ofthe scholars, including Al-Qaa4i Abu Yalaa and Ibn Aqeel,said that they will not be tested, on the grounds that the test is forthose who are accountable; those from whom the pen has been lifted(i.e., their deeds are not being recorded because they are notaccountable) are not included in this test, because there is no point inquestioning them about something for which they are notaccountable.Others said that they will be tested. This is the view ofAbul-J:Iakeemal-J:Iamadaani and Abul-J:Iasan ibn Abdoos, who narrated it from thecompanions of Ash-Shaafai. Maalik and others narrated from AbuHurayrah (.)that the Messenger ofAllah(~) offered the funeralprayer for a child, then he said,16Lawaami al-Anwaar al-Bahiyyah by As-Safaareeni, 2/l0; Tadhkirat al-Qur(ubi,14717Majmoo al-Fataawa, 4/257
  71. 71. 72 The Grave"0 Allah, protect him from the torment of the grave and thetrial of the grave."This view is in accordance with the views ofthose who say that theywill be tested in the Hereafter and that they will be accountable on theDay of Resurrection. This is the view of most of the scholars and ofAhl as-Sunnah among the scholars of hadith and kalaam. This iswhat is mentioned by Abul-I:Iasan al-Ashari from Ahl as-Sunnah,and he favoured this view; this is also what is implied by thestatements of Imam Al).mad.184 - The Torment and Blessing of the Grave(1) The a~aadeeth about the torment and blessing ofthe graveare mutawaatirThe commentator on At-Tal}aawiyyah said: "The reports from theMessenger of Allah (~) which confirm the torment and blessing ofthe grave, as a person deserves, and the questioning by the twoangels, reach the level of mutawaatir.19So it is obligatory to acceptthese facts and believe in them, but we do not discuss how thesethings occur, because the (human) mind is not able to comprehendhow they happen, for it is something which is not known in thisworld. Islam does not teach anything that contradicts common sense,although it may tell ofthings that are beyond the human imagination.When the soul returns to the body (in the grave), this does not happenin the same manner in which it happens in this world; it happens in away that is different from what is known in this world. "2018See Majmoo al-Fataawa, by Shaykh al-Islam Ibn Taymiyah, 4/257, 27719Report from a number of chain of narrators.20Shar~ al- Aqeedah af-Ta~aawiyyah, P 450